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Fate in God's or Human's Terms - Essay Example

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Name Instructor Class 13 December 2011 Fate in God's or Human's Terms Ancient text and Greek literature abound with the theme of fate, where heroes and heroines either do what they have to, in order to achieve their goals, or mercy of their gods define what happens to them…
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Fate in Gods or Humans Terms
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Download file to see previous pages This essay explores the different concepts of fate from these four stories. Gilgamesh and Rama show that both religious determinism and free will are the drivers of human fate, while Odysseus and Oedipus's fates are strong products of the works of their deities. Gilgamesh's story demonstrates that he will own his fate, though the gods still affect his fortune and misfortunes. Because he has become too authoritarian in his ways, the gods gave him his equal and rival, Enkidu. Enkidu is supposed to be his rival, but because he is impressed of the former's power, he makes Enkidu his best friend. Gilgamesh's affront of Ishtar has led to his misfortunes. The gods have decided to take his friend, which Enkidu cannot stop. He might be a noble and strong ruler, but he cannot reverse what the gods decree. Despite losing his best friend, Gilgamesh continues to rise in fame and power by exploiting his wits and strength. Also, even with Enkidu, he destroys powerful demons and enemies, which indicates that his strength and will shape his fate. Gilgamesh represents heroes who are not afraid of challenges, no matter how difficult they may be. As he and Enkidu conquer these infamous demons and beings, they achieve brotherhood and victory for some time. Hence, “The Epic of Gilgamesh” depicts that people can assert their will to achieve success and happiness, but the gods can also intervene and change their fates. Rama is similar to Gilgamesh, because he has the character to be a great ruler, but the gods also affected his fate. The opening of the story already establishes Rama's fate as a matter of his free will. Rama and Sita have been married for twelve years, when Dasharatha decided to crown Rama as King. Kaikeyi, however, obstructs Rama's kingship by using an old promise from Dasharatha. She asks him to exile Rama. Dasharatha had no choice but to give in to this promise and exiles Rama. Rama accepts his fate with self-control and obedience. Later on, he saves his wife from demons who have stolen her. Like Gilgamesh, Rama possesses power and will to pursue and enjoy victory. Many times, demons and other gods try to stop his success, nevertheless. Rama continues to persevere and shows readers that he is an ideal ruler. In the end, the gods let him have a better fate, when he is reunited with his family and rules over a peaceful and prosperous state. Rama's adventures from herein entail that he is a man who will use his fate to restore peace and happiness in his life, but the gods continue to have the last say on when and if human beings will find lasting happiness in their lives. Odysseus' fate is another matter, because the gods entirely decide what his life will be. His life represents how the Greeks view their fates and relationships with their gods. At first, a goddess imprisons Odysseus for one year. Poseidon also abhors Odysseus for many reasons, so he keeps on thwarting Odysseus' reunion with his family. Odysseus also has the kind of character that will, at times, bring him misfortune, such as when he said his real name to the Cyclops Polyphemus. This earns him Poseidon's wrath even further, since Polyphemus is his son. Without the timely and consistent assistance and support of the goddess Athene, Odysseus will not be able to surmount other gods' infringements on his destiny. Athene has to be there several times for him, so that he can be successful in his ordeals. Even at the end, when Odysseus returns to his family, Athene has to help him by ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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